The despoiling of classic literature

Author Subject: The despoiling of classic literature
Bayne MacGregor Posted At 18:09:10 11/22/2000
I can't believe the twisted horror being wrought on one of the greatest works in the english language by the new script. What are these people thinking? After the travesties recently wrought on the works of Verne this is the final insult! Just because the work is (now) called science fiction, is no reason to impose the ideas of modern scriptwritters onto a piece of classical literature. This book is one of the most influential works of fiction of the modern era. It is arguably unparralelled in it's impact on future authors and the world in general, rivaled only by the other comparable works by the same author! If the degree of alterations proposed for this film were proposed for any other similar but not "science fiction" work, the outcry would be stupendous. This is unconcienable! If a book can maintain itself in sales and in print for over a hundred years, then it can safely say that it is a viable work in it's original form. There is no need to radically alter it or modernise it for a contemporary audience. After the abominable butchering of Verne's classics, a friend of mine humourously proposed that a comitee be set up to execute all those involved in such wretched projects, we all laughed about it then, but after news about the current project I'm left unable to laugh. I can only pray that this script is radically altered to properly reflect the original story before the project gets underway. One of the undercurrents of the novel was a criticism of British Imperialism, let it not become a tragic vehicle for American Imperialism. The only thing I fear more, is that after butchering my second favourite novel of all time, they might deign to butcher The War Of The Worlds, my favourite, next.
Katharine Posted At 11:46:29 12/06/2000
I have to agree with you totally on this point, but in regards to your next favourite novel, 'War of the Worlds'there are already 2-3 adaptations of this book. The first is the 1950's 'War of the Worlds' which is set in the 1950's and in my mind is a complete load of trash. However Jeff Waynes musical adaptation created in 1978, inspired me when I was just 11 years old to go on and read the works of H. G. Wells. I do think this adaptation does the book justice, if you have not listened to it I suggest you look it up! The last is more of an analogy of 'The War of the Worlds' theme, 'Independence Day' and is a good film in its own right, but it would be nice to see the remaking of 'War of the Worlds' set in 1898, but using the technology that was used to make 'Independence Day'! What do you think!
Katharine Posted At 14:11:29 12/06/2000
By the way, what is your favourite novel?
Bayne Posted At 18:42:10 12/06/2000
I have a copy of the Jeff Wayne musical, which is thankfully very close to the book, I also have on record a very shortened spoken word version of War of the worlds on one side and the time machine on the other. . I actually enjoyed the 50's War Of The Worlds movie, but mainly because it is more a movie of the Orson Welles broadcast than the original book, and also because it would be extremely hard to have made an accurate version at that time. Independance day was fun, and obviously relied heavilly on WOTW, but had none of the subtle depth and social criticism of the original (I own a copy of that movie also).

To clear things up, War Of The Worlds is my favourite book, and The Time Machine my second favourite.

These days, with the state of special effects, there really is no excuse not to stick closely to these works.
They need to show respect to such influential and formative works, whose appeal has remained so universal to keep the works in print for over a century.

Oh well, time will tell.
Richard D. Cole Posted At 11:32:47 12/07/2000
Having raised two sets of children, and I understand how the film differ from original works,such
as The Time Machine (1st) and The War Of The Worlds(2nd, my order of favorites). To really injoy the works as intented, read the novel, But to make a film,
thoughts and feelings are hard to put on film and action
and special effects bring the younger people and the $$.
I agree with you on how films take away from the
intended original works. but I do enjoy the films.
Have you read some of the childrens adaptions
of Time Machine, lots of things have been added and I
think this what the new movie might turn into. BAD IDEA!
Katharine Yates Posted At 06:42:09 12/08/2000
There is a small amount of social critisim in'Independence Day, be it only in the title! It seems to be likening independance from the 'aliens' to the independence of the Americans from 'British Imperialism' its very tounge in cheek but its there all the same, don't you think? I agree with Richard Cole also, that at the end of the day its what brings in the $$, that will determine the final adaptation to screen, and I fear that your prayers will go unanswered in regard to a script change!
LaShondra Posted At 08:20:42 03/12/2001
Hey, how are you doing? I need your assistance w/ a
topic that I have. The name of it is
Social Critisim in Literature. Can you help me w/
it, I would appreciate it. Thanks!